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The Spoils Of Summer: Preventing Good Food From Going Bad

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By Mia Bolaris-Forget

With the Memorial Day weekend now behind us, the official bbq season is officially here. But, with sweltering temperatures, spoiling your food may come just as easily as spoiling your guests.

In fact, experts assert that for many this grilling tradition may stir up another custom or stomachaches, nausea (and vomiting), and in some cases hospitalization, often associated with leaving food out in the sun (for too long) or undercooking meats.

And they note the following among the most risky repast

· Pink hamburgers

· Pink ground beef

· Raw fresh fish

· Raw oysters

· Raw or unpasteurized milk

· Alfalfa sprouts

· Runny eggs

In fact, runny, undercooked eggs were considered among the most commonly eaten (risky) food, and that includes eggs that are used in the preparation of sauces such as hollandaise sauce, meringue, Caesar salad dressing, etc.

Professionals even take it a step further and recommend against sunny-side-up, soft-boiled, even “over-easy” eggs since they carry the risk of salmonella. And, they add the best eggs to look for (especially if you like them runny) are those labeled pasteurized

Another note of caution from the experts deals with fresh “fast-food”, prepared foods bought at the supermarket. Besides being aware of when it was prepared, packaged and put out for consumption, prepared foods should never be kept un-refrigerated for over two hours. And, even healthy products such as unprocessed foods such as natural juices may be hosting a multitude of dangerous bacteria, noting that pasteurized products are a healthier option.

Finally as bbq basics they offer the following tips to keep everyone happy and HEALTHY:

· Sterilize and Sanitize: Make sure to thoroughly wash (in hot or warm water) hands as well as utensils, cutting boards and countertops, before and after each use. Also make sure to wash produce, which may carry harmful bacteria.

· Set Basic Barriers: Refrain from pouring marinates on cooked foods or placing already prepared meets back on the plate they sat on “in the raw”, at least not without washing or rinsing it first. It’s best to keep raw meats, fish, poultry etc., separate from cooked versions of these fine foods, and make sure to boil any and all sauces or marinates that you may wan to reuse.

· Grill To Perfection: Medium-rare may be your personal preference, but it may not necessarily be the healthiest choice. Instead experts suggest cooking meats well to kill off bugs and bacteria. Heat coals for 20 to 30 minutes then use a meat thermometer to make sure that burgers and meats are cooked to approximately 160 degrees. Poultry (ground) should be grilled to 165 degrees, breast to 170 degrees, and dark meat to about 180 degrees. Additionally, poultry juices should run clear and the fish should e opaque and flaky.

· Cool Off: No, not by taking a dip in the pool, but rather by putting foods on ice or getting it out of the sun (since the heat can cause it to spoil rather quickly). And store whatever you can in the fridge until guests arrive or after all have eaten and/or someone makes a request for that dish again.

Long Island Safety Articles > The Spoils Of Summer: Preventing Good Food From Going Bad

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